At Newcastle CMF there are two things we love: God and cake. Incidentally, we also love Norwich City (but I get the feeling that one might be edited out!)
Cakes are a great way to reach people with the gospel; I mean can you think of somebody who does not like cake? No? Neither can I! At Newcastle Medical School, it's a rarity when you walk through the foyer not to see a cake stall, so preclinical CMF students decided to join in and set one up themselves. Not wishing to be outdone by others, they worked through the night, baking in the name of CMF. As pictured, a wide variety of cakes were made (and of course tested!) The cake stall was set up at 8.30am and alongside selling cake we also gave out CMF literature. Cake stalls provide awesome opportunities to tell people about CMF and the values we stand for, as well as raising money. People love cake, so why not sell cake and make money for CMF? It's pretty simple.
But Newcastle's love for cake and the Gospel does not end there and neither should yours! For what better way to spread the word to your friends and coursemates than with cake… and Bible verses?
At Newcastle, the fourth years have a difficult end of first term, for when all other courses are enjoying the Christmas atmosphere, the medics end up living in the library and digesting more alpha haemoglobinopathies than mince pies. So are your friends too stressed to hear about Jesus? Yes… wrong again! When thinking about how to reach more fourth years we were struggling to think about what practically would work amidst the stress of exams. So at a CMF social at a breakfast parlour they came up with the idea of putting cakes in the library whilst medics were revising, so that when they had a break from work there would be a nice surprise waiting for them. An example of showing God's love for them practically, but is that enough on its own?
The answer is probably not. It's not that showing people our and God's love practically is a bad thing (after all James does say 'faith apart from works is useless' - ESV (1). But when we're trying to tell people the Gospel, words are pretty crucial. If not, then sure - people would like the cakes and they may wonder who made them, but that would be it. It would just be a temporary thing. We're told of the necessity of explaining and telling people the Gospel in Romans:
How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? (1)
So we decided to put Bible verses and leave Gospel tracts with the cakes in the library café. This gives a relaxed environment for people to eat cakes and read and look over the verses and tracts in their own times.
The week was successful; cakes got eaten, Bible verses read and thank you notes were written. The results of it we don't know, but as Kevin Vaughan reminded us in his recent address at CMF National Student Conference 'a lot of what we do is cultivating; it's about sowing seeds, and the rest is all up to God'. We can rest in the promise that 'so is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it'. (3) As one medic Zoe summarises: 'It was a great opportunity to simply share God's love in a time of need'.
You too can do this, it's not hard, so here is a step-by-step guide to evangelism and fundraising through cakes - Newcastle style!
- Bake cakes.
- Find a location and put cakes, Bible verses, tracts and CMF bookmarks there.
- Put on a friendly face and if selling cakes or manning the stall, be ready to explain what CMF do, and discuss the gospel when prompted.
- Have fun - remember cakes are amazing! It's a good change to have fellowship baking!
Newcastle CMF prides itself on poetic skills so we'll end with a poem!
Cakes are great and tasty too.
We should show God in all we do,
With Bible verses and Gospel cards,
Sharing God's love with his help is not that hard!
Make cakes and share the Gospel!
Rachel Hubbard is a 4th year medical student in Newcastle.